Case is special grammatical form of nouns and pronouns expressing their role in syntax and semantics of sentence. Usually languages with case system a little bit complex than English also apply cases to adjectives, numerals and other lexical categories able to function as object or subject. Nûrlâm has no agreement in case with them. However numerals have some case endings with special meaning.
Nûrlâm has 14 cases formed mostly by postpositions which are usually translated into English as prepositions, which makes interpretation of cases much easier than one can expect from their quantity. The exception is Accusative case ending, which has no separate meaning thus making it suffix rather than postposition. The case system is very close to that of Finno-Ugric (Uralic) languages, some languages of Caucasus and extinct Hurrian language which has some similarity with Tolkien's Black Speech. There is also some resemblance with Quenya's case system, which was also inspired by Finnish language. Case postpositions are the same for all lexical categories using them, but are different for two existing declension classes and many pronouns have special forms.
Certain verbs require their objects to be in specific case or may even change their meaning depending on object's case.
The table of case postpositions and suffixes. “∅” stands for zero-ending. “Ending I” is for declension class I (ending with consonants) and “Ending II” is for words ending with vowels.
|Case||Abbreviation||Ending I||Ending II||English translation|
|Dative||DAT||-ûr||-zûr||for, to (somebody)|
|Instrumental||INS||-irzi||-rzi||by, by means of, by use of, with use of, using, through (use of), via|
|Essive||ESS||-si||similar to, as a …, like a …, -like|
|Adessive||ADE||-ir||-zir||on, on top of, at|
|Allative||ALL||-u||-zu||to, towards, upon, onto|
|Elative||ELA||-ah||-zah||from, out of|
|Illative||ILL||-ishi||-shi||into, inwards, inside, in, within|
|Intrative||ITRT||-ri||between, amidst, among|
The table below shows better the distinction between various locative cases:
However, while the difference between Illative and Allative cases is usually clear and easy to catch, with other pairs it's often not, so some practice and memorization is needed.
Case forms are given for standalone personal pronouns. Forms different from standard are marked bold. Pronouns in Accusative case always has -(i)sh endings (except 3rd person neutral za and plural tak and ut). 1st and 2nd person plural pronouns have case same forms as their singular equivalents but with common plural suffixes -û or -z added after case endings according to postposition's declension class (e.g. “izishiz” = to us). Other pronouns has usual case endings according to tables above. As subject and object pronouns have distinct forms, the terms Subjective and Objective case are used instead of Nominative or Accusative.
|Case||All subdialects||Modern variant 2|
| sg. m.,|
| sg. f.,|
| sg. n.,|
Numerals have no agreement with nouns in case but they take case some case endings to modify their meanings. They are:
Probably every postposition was meant to be a specific case ending in ancient forms of Black Speech. Orc-curse copies English grammar in cases (lacking of them) and using prepositions instead of postpositions. So, the following stages of dropping out the cases are assumed: